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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 02-11-2014, 01:10 PM   #21
Dakota Base
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Re: Resting Heart Rate 42 BPM; Good, Bad?

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Originally Posted by Janez Bobnik View Post
Sorry for late reply. Thank you for your answer. This makes sense.
So how about blood pressure? Is blood pressure related to heart rate? In my opinion it is - as heart is what (mostly) causes blood pressure, right? The other factor would be the elasticy of veins / arteries?
I've measured my blood pressure few days ago (made 3 measurements with a pause in between) and my blood pressure was 115/78 which is (according to this blood pressure chart http://healthiack.com/health/blood-p...pressure-chart) quite optimal?
The stronger and healthier the heart, the lower the blood pressure - is this statement still valid nowadays?

Thank you.
There are a lot of indicators or factors to build up a "healthy person". Low heart rate can be an indicator of health, low blood pressure can be as well. Or they can be symptoms of disorders. Or they can be misleading, as these two indicators don't tell the entire story.

Blood pressure can be effected by a number of things:

Density and viscosity of your blood - this can vary with hydration state, triglyceride content, platelet disorders, red blood cell count (which can be trained, or fostered by elevation living), cholesterol content, etc. High density or viscosity will increase both systolic and diastolic numbers.

Venous capacity - can be effected by elasticity, genetics, cholesterol precipitation (clogging veins and arteries), etc. Low capacity or blockages will raise both numbers. Low capacity but high elasticity will generate a high gap.

Blood turn-over - this is a factor of how much blood volume you have, and how fast it gets pumped through your body. A larger or stronger heart will pump more with each beat, which puts higher pressure spikes on the systolic number usually with more of a gap. The faster you have to move blood, the more your BP will increase (i.e. bp raises when you start running low on air).

That 115/78 is a good number. Nothing to worry about. But having a low BP and low HR doesn't make you run a 5k faster or bench more.

I generally run in the 50's for resting HR, and 80 over 40 for resting BP. This stays pretty consistent whether I'm in great shape, or terrible shape (for me), and has been for around 15yrs. Bad times I get up to the mid 50's for HR and 90/40. Doesn't seem like much change on paper, but I have experienced "good shape versus bad shape" differences, for example, in my 5k and 10k paces of 1-2min/mile that produced the same HR and BP.

They're just indicators of health. Doesn't necessarily mean that you're in good shape, just means that your cardiovascular system doesn't have to work very hard to survive.

Dynamic BP and HR testing, as well as respiration and perspiration rate testing, VO2 max testing, and core temp testing are much better indicators of fitness. I can have a really low RESTING BP and HR, but that doesn't matter if it shoots through the roof as soon as I start running.

Max HR calculations (220-age = max) and workout zone limitations are only guidelines. There is medical evidence that sustaining HR over those limits can have detrimental effects, maybe not acute symptoms (but can be), but more often development of longer term conditions. It's much like over-revving a car - you CAN floor your car and run it past the red line without blowing up, but if you run it too hard frequently, it's not going to last very long for you.
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Old 02-11-2014, 02:44 PM   #22
Dare Vodusek
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Re: Resting Heart Rate 42 BPM; Good, Bad?

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Max HR calculations (220-age = max) and workout zone limitations are only guidelines. There is medical evidence that sustaining HR over those limits can have detrimental effects, maybe not acute symptoms (but can be), but more often development of longer term conditions. It's much like over-revving a car - you CAN floor your car and run it past the red line without blowing up, but if you run it too hard frequently, it's not going to last very long for you.
What are healthy limits? I can keep my hr very close to 95% for long time, but if thats unhealthy...I rather dont.
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Old 02-11-2014, 08:38 PM   #23
Dakota Base
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Re: Resting Heart Rate 42 BPM; Good, Bad?

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Originally Posted by Dare Vodusek View Post
What are healthy limits? I can keep my hr very close to 95% for long time, but if thats unhealthy...I rather dont.
95% is mega high. HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) like Crossfit usually plays in the upper end of the tolerance limit, but 95% for too long isn't good for you.

The traditional method for calculating HR zones:

220 - Age = MAX HR

Max HR x 50% to 75% = "Fat Burning Zone", a cozy zone where you can maintain this comfortably for the long haul. This can be sustained almost indefinitely.

Max HR x 75% to 85% = "Cardiovascular Development Zone", a sweaty and hard breathing zone where you're really doing work. This can be sustained, but is difficult, and you'll generally see upward HR drift at the same output level (i.e. treadmill running at same speed or cycling with same resistance) over time. This can be a 10-20min workout, 30min might cause excessive CV fatigue in most athletes. This should be your target "time-averaged" HR zone during a HIIT workout.

Max HR x 85% to 90% = "Threshhold Zone", an uncomfortable zone where prolonged activity at this level without breaks (i.e. the rests in HIIT) can get hairy, exceeding this "Threshhold" doesn't benefit the athlete, and can cause negative results. This can be sustained for short bursts, but shouldn't be maintained too long. (5-10min is LONG at this level).

Max HR x 90% to 100% = "Excessive Zone", uncomfortable and dangerous area where you're not benefiting yourself any more than Zone 2 or 3, and actually running the risk of overexerting yourself, causing excessive fatigue and prolonging recovery time. It should not be used, and not be intentionally sustained for any amount of time.

The Traditional Method is ONLY based on Age and percentages, so it doesn't factor in ANY fitness attributes of the athlete.

The more "Modern Style" for calculating a specialized heart rate zone break-down, which fits more closely to "perceived effort" and adjusts more accordingly to an athlete's actual condition, rather than their age:

Max HR = 220 - Age

HR Reserve = Max HR - Resting HR

HR Reserve x (1 + 50% to 75%) = Fat Burning Zone

HR Reserve x (1 + 75 to 85%) = Cardio Development Zone

HR Reserve x (1 + 85% to 90%) = Threshold Zone

HR Reserve x (1 + 90%+) = Excessive Zone

One criticism of the Modern Method is that it pushes people with higher resting HR's to work at higher HR's than people with lower resting HR's. In that light, the numbers for the Modern Method will suggest a HIGHER limit for an unfit person with a high resting heart rate than it would for a fit person with a low resting HR.

So, for me:

Age = 30
Resting HR = 55bpm

Both Methods:

Max HR = 190bpm

Traditional Method:

Fat Burning Zone = 95-143bpm
Cardio Zone = 143-162bpm
Threshold Zone = 162-171bpm

Modern Method:

HR Reserve = 135bpm

Fat Burning Zone = 123-156bpm
Cardio Zone = 156-170bpm
Threshhold Zone = 170-177bpm

So take your pick which method you use. I use the Modern Method because I feel like the bottom end (50%) in the Traditional Method is WAY WAY too low for me to slip into the Fat Burning Zone. 95bpm for me is an increase of 40bpm, but it's nothing that feels like a workout, at any level. 125bpm starts to feel like a workout, and I generally never dip much below around 140 for my target for most workouts (since I'm not usually worried about fat burn). I try not to hang out over 175bpm for any amount of time.
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Old 02-11-2014, 11:40 PM   #24
Alex Burden
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Re: Resting Heart Rate 42 BPM; Good, Bad?

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Originally Posted by Dare Vodusek View Post
Im not sure about that Alex. I am 33, my hr in the morning is 50 and my max is somewhere in the 185-190 area.

And I most likely cant run 5k in one piece, my conditioning is simply terrible.

Ive read/heard that fitness can be "measured" how long it takes for your HR to return to normal after being at max.
I think there are a number of things that need to be taken into account and nobody really can tell what is right.

You have your resting HR, max HR, time for HR to return to normal, the actual work load during stress, lung capacity and so much more.

I don't know if you have noticed that people are fit in one thing for example running but they can't lift, someone is good at swimming but hopeless at rowing, you can take a body pump class but can't run without collapsing... you are fit for one thing or a number of things but not everything.

Just like crossfit.... you might beat Rich Froning jr in one event but try doing it in 10 events...

So i would not worry so much about your resting HR, keep fit and try and improve on all of your challenges ahead of you.

Last edited by Alex Burden : 02-12-2014 at 12:05 AM.
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Old 02-12-2014, 01:57 AM   #25
Dare Vodusek
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Re: Resting Heart Rate 42 BPM; Good, Bad?

I seem to be much like you Dakota, in terms of HR. I also start to "feel it" at 120 and not earlier.

I also did a test at the doctors office. Was walking on a trendmill and my ECG was monitored. I reached a max of 11.1 MET after 10 minutes. Trendmill was at 16% and speed was 6.6 (I had to walk, running was not allowed, so it was a very brisk walk). I had 181 bpm and 160/60 blood pressure.

But in was in 90% max for more than 1 minute, because my hr was 174 at 9min mark. Oddly I had the max pressure at that mark - 160/90, so maybe thats the sign of a peak performance of my heart?

Ill keep a closer eye on my max % now and wont go over 170 in longer events.
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Old 03-10-2014, 08:17 AM   #26
Janez Bobnik
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Re: Resting Heart Rate 42 BPM; Good, Bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dakota Base View Post
95% is mega high. HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) like Crossfit usually plays in the upper end of the tolerance limit, but 95% for too long isn't good for you.

The traditional method for calculating HR zones:

220 - Age = MAX HR

Max HR x 50% to 75% = "Fat Burning Zone", a cozy zone where you can maintain this comfortably for the long haul. This can be sustained almost indefinitely.

Max HR x 75% to 85% = "Cardiovascular Development Zone", a sweaty and hard breathing zone where you're really doing work. This can be sustained, but is difficult, and you'll generally see upward HR drift at the same output level (i.e. treadmill running at same speed or cycling with same resistance) over time. This can be a 10-20min workout, 30min might cause excessive CV fatigue in most athletes. This should be your target "time-averaged" HR zone during a HIIT workout.

Max HR x 85% to 90% = "Threshhold Zone", an uncomfortable zone where prolonged activity at this level without breaks (i.e. the rests in HIIT) can get hairy, exceeding this "Threshhold" doesn't benefit the athlete, and can cause negative results. This can be sustained for short bursts, but shouldn't be maintained too long. (5-10min is LONG at this level).

Max HR x 90% to 100% = "Excessive Zone", uncomfortable and dangerous area where you're not benefiting yourself any more than Zone 2 or 3, and actually running the risk of overexerting yourself, causing excessive fatigue and prolonging recovery time. It should not be used, and not be intentionally sustained for any amount of time.

The Traditional Method is ONLY based on Age and percentages, so it doesn't factor in ANY fitness attributes of the athlete.

The more "Modern Style" for calculating a specialized heart rate zone break-down, which fits more closely to "perceived effort" and adjusts more accordingly to an athlete's actual condition, rather than their age:

Max HR = 220 - Age

HR Reserve = Max HR - Resting HR

HR Reserve x (1 + 50% to 75%) = Fat Burning Zone

HR Reserve x (1 + 75 to 85%) = Cardio Development Zone

HR Reserve x (1 + 85% to 90%) = Threshold Zone

HR Reserve x (1 + 90%+) = Excessive Zone

One criticism of the Modern Method is that it pushes people with higher resting HR's to work at higher HR's than people with lower resting HR's. In that light, the numbers for the Modern Method will suggest a HIGHER limit for an unfit person with a high resting heart rate than it would for a fit person with a low resting HR.

So, for me:

Age = 30
Resting HR = 55bpm

Both Methods:

Max HR = 190bpm

Traditional Method:

Fat Burning Zone = 95-143bpm
Cardio Zone = 143-162bpm
Threshold Zone = 162-171bpm

Modern Method:

HR Reserve = 135bpm

Fat Burning Zone = 123-156bpm
Cardio Zone = 156-170bpm
Threshhold Zone = 170-177bpm

So take your pick which method you use. I use the Modern Method because I feel like the bottom end (50%) in the Traditional Method is WAY WAY too low for me to slip into the Fat Burning Zone. 95bpm for me is an increase of 40bpm, but it's nothing that feels like a workout, at any level. 125bpm starts to feel like a workout, and I generally never dip much below around 140 for my target for most workouts (since I'm not usually worried about fat burn). I try not to hang out over 175bpm for any amount of time.
I agree with you on heart rate zones but I personally think that "220 minus age" is not so accurate calculation as every individual is different and this is only a static formula.

Here's a good (and a bit dangerous) method to obtain your max hr rate (be sure you are 100% healthy when performing this method)

Measure your maximum Heart rate by yourself (taken from here http://healthiack.com/heart-rate-calculator#measure)
Go outside and find a track where you can run freely. You should be perfectly healthy at the time of performing this test as this method can be dangerous. Gear yourself with a heart rate monitor. If you do not own one, borrow the device from a friend. Start of by stretching your muscles. Then, run for 7 10 minutes with moderate pace. After that, increase your intensity every 30 seconds until you reach the intensity you cannot maintain for more than 10 seconds. When such intensity is reached write down or remember your current heart rate. Add 5 units to this number and there is your maximum heart rate. So if your maximum heart rate reading at all-out intensity was 185 BPM simply add 5 BPM on top of that. Your maximum heart rate is 190 BPM! Still, this method is not 100% accurate, but this measurement is more reliable than merely subtracting your age from 220.

For me the formula shows 192 (220-28), but I've performed the above mentioned test and "got" my max heart rate to be 200 (was able to get my heart rate up to 195 when running uphill).
If I can still operate at 195 BMP I think this is not my max HR yet...?
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